June 20, 2021 | finance & economy

PM Barzani lays foundation stone for Duhok french fry factory


ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — Kurdistan Region Prime Minister Masrour Barzani on Thursday laid the foundation stone of a food processing plant in Duhok that will make french fries from locally-grown potatoes.

“This will be a strong support in order to step-by-step develop the business and industrial sectors in Kurdistan. Farmers that grow wheat or potatoes need to be ensured that their products will be used,” Barzani said at the ceremony.

Kurdish farmers have struggled to find markets for their produce in the past. Last year, farmers dumped loads of potatoes in front of the agriculture ministry in Erbil, protesting against imports that pushed their spuds out of the market.

The Jutiar factory will buy 100,000 tons of potatoes annually and create 500 factory jobs.

The factory is being funded by Kurdish and Dutch investors and built by KH Company, a Duhok based international company established in 2010.

At the ceremony, Barzani thanked KH Company and the Netherlands.

“Last year when I visited the Netherlands, I met with Prime Minister Mark Rutte and discussed Netherlands supporting the reform program of the Kurdistan Region and support developing the economy of the Region,” Barzani said. “They gladly approached our request and expressed their readiness to support and help in order for the Kurdistan Region’s agriculture sector and other economic sectors to develop.”

“We want Kurdistan to be known for its products, for people to know the flavor of Kurdish products,” he said. “This will serve as a trademark for Kurdish products when they are sold abroad.”

The Netherlands has invested about $17 million in Iraq’s agriculture sector.

The KRG is also building large sites to store and process wheat in Erbil and Sulaimani.

rudaw

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